Leaving the door open,,I quickly got a pair of dungarees out and pulled them on over my cutoffs,loaded
all my junk,wallet and cash into the pockets and put my belt on while listening to the snips and snatches of conversations
I could hear coming from the other parts of the house.That dread weight in my gut made me strain to catch whatever clue I
could about what may be happening with Melissa.
"Is she gonna
go or not,Prissy?"," Well,Cindy,,I bet we're gonna have a blast.","I don't know John.",,"All weekend,,not just overnight.","Do
we need to get another cooler?","Yes,,that one from my house.","I'm hoping he'll bring that tent,,but it should be fairly
nice all weekend.","Dale,,come on.","No,,of course not,,we'll all have vehicles."
Then as I stepped to my dresser to grab some clean socks Dale's vans motor roared to life and someone turned on the stereo
in the living room.
'there ends that.' my nagger offered prompting me to consider that she was
going to go,,but I needed to hurry so I could sort of follow along and kept her in sight or something like that for some reason.
I sat down to put the socks and my shoes on with a sense of urgency becaming a co-resident along side that dread that was
lifting a bit knowing Dales van was cranked and moving out meaning Melissa would be back in a moment.
Standing and stepping to the closet to pull out and put on a gray hooded three quarter sleeved pullover with Ocean Pacifics
logo across it's chest above the pouch pocket,I grabbed a couple of tee shirts and pants,,stuffed them into a rucksak from
off my top closet shelf then turn,grab my cigarettes and the pak of doobs off my bed to add them in while stepping through
the door to smile at Melissa coming around the corner into the hall.
"Hi,ya'dude!" she said smiling."Hi,cutie." I said in return as I zipped my pak shut and
wondered where I put my keys as that leaden dread turned into a very pleasantly opposite sort of feeling.
"She said she was definately going to be there at the Pines and to tell you that she is really glad you are not upset with
her.",came simultaneously with,'check your shorts pocket,dude.'
Sticking my hand down my pants
to retrieve my keys from my shorts pocket made Melissa go wide eyed and say with a mischevious giggle,,,"Uh,,I can give ya
a hand with that if ya want."
Pulling my hand out with a laugh and a quick,,"I'll take you up
on that later,Ma'am.",,I showed her the keyring then turned to lock my door.
As she bent to pick
up my pack she said,,"Ya better,Mister." then asked me,,"Did you get everything you wanted to."
"Close enuff for now,,I can allways come back if I need to."
"That's true." she said and handed
me my pack as we made our way into the living room where Mike looked over at me from where he was talking on the phone and
fiddled with the stereo to say,,"Cindy will be over in about a half hour to pick me up."
I paused as Melissa continued on toward where John and Priscilla were making noises in the
kitchen getting stuff together to take with them.
"Hey,,Mike,,do you want to climb up in the attic
while you're waiting and get my tent down?","Yeah,,I can do that,man.","Cool,we're going to go ahead and go,,I think I will
stop and get that hamburger and stuff since I doubt Dale will remember it."
really out of it,ain't he?,,no,,not you,Cindy,Dale."
Walking away I said loudly to him over my
shoulder,,"I put it right by the hatch on the left side so all you have to do is reach in and grab it."
"Okay,,but hey,,where's the ladder,dude?"
"It's outside your bedroom window isn't it?"
"Oh,,yeah,,see ya later."
I turned around,smirked at him while we both recalled last night and
flicked a little salute his way while saying,,"Thanks,Mike,be careful.Later,dude",,then turned back to walk into the kitchen
proper where John,Prissy and now Melissa were moving around loading ice and sodas in a cooler and set my pak down in the first
kitchen table chair.
Seeing me come in John looked at me and said,,'Should we take a bunch of stuff,,food and
like that,,or not?"
"At least enuff for tonight,,but we can allways zip to the store or whatever,,right?"
"Zip?not in my beater,,so I guess you can in Sky."
"Yeah,,,no prob,,so long as I ain't too busy."
which I followed with a leer toward Melissa,,which she seen and threw a piece of ice at me while laughingly saying,,"Yeah,,don't
go disturbing us if we are busy,John."
"Johnny can take his car if we need anything special,,,I
like riding in your slow car,John.And we can ride along all close and all,you know I really like that."
Hearing her say that like that,,knowing she was as sincere as could be and telling the truth from her heart made me feel rather
good for John.She obviously loved my good friend and I thought they would make each other quite happy if they stayed together
for a while.
As Melissa came over to me with a faux evil
grin on her beautiful twinklygreeneyed faced and her visibly wet,assumably cold hands raised like the wolfman or something
my nagger asked rather cheerfully,,"don't ya think she feels like a good fit?'
far,,it seems pretty good." I looked at her and said,,"Be prepared for cubes in your clothes if ya touch me with those." while
waggling a finger at her.
Her hands darted for my neck,,fingers outstretched and wiggling,little drops of water flicking
against my skin ahead of them.
I tucked my head down into my neck and she grabbed my cheeks to
hold my face steady while she locked her lips on mine.
The combination of her cold fingers and
hot kiss birthed a round of goosebumps from the back of my neck to my crotch to the area behind my knees.Happily returning
her enthusiastic fervor,,I slid my arms around her and leaned on in to the kiss,,drawing her fully into my arms.
After a few moments of blissful tongue wrasslin' John and Prissy's increasingly emphatic harumphs,ahems and throat clearing
coughs we slowly broke lip contact and she leaned her head into the crook of my shoulder to face John and Prissy's smiling
Unable to see her face I could tell by the look on Johns face that Melissas expression must
be somewhat akin to satisfaction.My nagger spoke up by saying,,'i guess that look was justified then' when Prissy's comment
of,,"Ooh,guurl,,you look like a cat that just chowed down on the canary." set us all to laughing.
Having dropped my arms down to her waist I turned her a bit to step away from her and asked no one in particular,,"Which side
of the house did I park on?" while picking up a cooler.My cheeks were feeling warm as John commented,,"Looks like the white
guys turning a pretty shade of blush over there."
"Your cars out front." Melissa said as she picked
up my pack off the west side chair seat then continued with,"I'll get the door for you." while turning to look me in the face.
The odd smile that played across her face,which made my face get about five more degrees warmer also gave me an intense feeling
of satisfaction and happiness.
I pontededly said nothing,,nor looked at John or Prissy as I said,"Thank
you,Melissa." and sauntered out past her.
Their voices rose in a chorus of laughter as I left and Mark came out of the hall to see
my face and ask,"Ooh,someone burned you?" as we passed each other.
"Not really,," came Melissas
voice as she too left the kitchen,",,he's just a little shy.John and Melissa was watching us kiss."
That got a laugh from Mike and he responded with,"Yeah,,he's a lot of things but exhibitionist ain't one of them,,usually."
Having gotten to the outer front door I quit paying attention as I lifted my left knee to
balance the cooler on it in order to free my right hand to open the door and seen a shadowy hand reach across from my right
to shove against the cooler.
Having caught sight of it while focusing on the door knob,I had enough
reaction time to tense up my left hands grip on the cooler so the small,,yet very real force from that shadowy hand was negated
while I simply continued with my motion and opened the door,re-grabbed the rightside cooler handle,and stepped on out to quickly,,yet
carefully get down the steps the duppies had put my butt on earlier that day where the afternoon Florida sun beat down turning
the step area into a sunoven.
Turning quickly to look through the open door where Melissa was coming into the wedge of
hot bright sunlight now streaming down onto and across the threshold area where I had just been I answered my naggers question
of 'whew,,if she just keeps coming now,,the sun'll keep those things off her,,won't it?' with "it should,,but what about tonight?"
inside my head and said to Melissa,"I ain't shy,,It's just that I only do private shows." Which got back a real quick,"Oh,exclusive,are
"Yes,ma'am.That I is."
Laughing,I followed her to the car after
she shut the door and came down the steps to walk past me while trailing a finger across my right cheek and smilingly wonderfully
at my open mouthed wide eyed knee quivering reaction I put on for her.
After she opened Sky's passenger door and leaned the seat forward I put the cooler on the
floorboard behind the drivers seat.
Her hand on my left butt cheek,,which surprised,pleased and
aroused me all at once also reminded me that I did not have a bandana with me so after letting her grope me for a moment I
said over my shoulder,,with a little bootie waggle for effect,,"I forgot something,,so as soon as you're done feeling me up,,I
gotta go back inside for a second,sweetie."
Moving back so I could get out,she said,"Okay,,but
you gotta get that cute little heinie back out here right away."
Wizzing away I said,,"I'll fly
like Sky!" and only slowed down once I opened the front door to step through on guard against that duppy.
Nothing greeted me as I stepped through and then blocked the bright hot sunlight by shutting
the door behind me.Pausing for a moment,,nothing was visibly alive and moving except Mike working a seven foot ladder carefully
through the arch into the hallway.
Relieved yet still apprehensive,I headed his way while listening
to him talking to himself about manuvering the ladder.
"Hey,that thing ain't talking back to you
is it?" I asked as he set it down under the attic hatch.He turned to me to say,,"No,,it ain't talking to me,,it's nagging
me.That's what it's doing,,nagging.Nag.nag.nag.Just like Cindy does me,,nag,nag,nag."
set the ladder up I said,"Aww,dude,,ya wouldn't have it any other way,,would you?"
not."he replied through smiling lips."I thrive on it,,eat it up!"
Laughing first I then said,"Well,,I'll
hold the ladder for you to help make sure you don't have to get your next few helpings spoon fed to you in a hospital bed."
Smiling wide still he added,,"Or through a straw,maybe.Thanks." then mounted the ladder as I stepped into position to steady
Grabbing the ladder as he moved up it I added,"At least there would be the sponge baths."
which got back "Aww,,Cindy would propbally just hose me off out back." from him as he pushed the attic hatch upward that produced
a shrill allmost birdlike shrieking sound which seemed to cut through my ears like a knife.
about hurt!" I exclaimed and twizzled my pinky in my left ear while keeping a firm grip on the ladder with my right to counter
act the effect Mikes reaction had on the ladder.
His reply of,"Yeeah it did." became muffled and
hollowy sounding on the 'it' as his head entered the attic and he looked for the tent in the darkness.
"It should be right there with in arms reach,man." Icalled up to him and then added quickly,,"But,,I'd slap on it a bit before
grabbing aholt of it.There ain't no telling what kind of insectoid monsters may be hanging out on it."
'or shadow creeps sitting on top of it.' pinged through my head right as Mike's voice blasted
down a full throated whoop of fright followed by,,"eeeeewww,,it was a biggun too.eh!ugh!aa-aah!iggy!ack!" and began twitching
around ducking his elbows in tight to his ribs and flicking his hands around close to his chest under his chin.
"Easy,dude!" I said in reaction to the ladder getting animated by his motions.
He stilled and
paused,,then quiveringly shook all over again before beginning to slap,smack and shove at the tents bagged bundle to rock
it back and forth a bit.
"Run!Scram!Vamoose all you ugly big little fugly fuzzy boogers!Big daddy
human dude is coming through!" he warbled in a varyingly hi then low pitched voice while increasingly keeping his hands on
the bag longer in between slaps and shoves.
Suddenly grabbing it firmly to jerk it to him and
down out of the hatch he called out,,"Heads up,dude!Here she comes,,critters and all,man!"
I reached out to catch it's downward plunge's momentum with my left,snatch a hold on the
carrying strap that was fortunately on the side facing towards me,pull the bags bottom backwards with my left and then laid
the bags diverted weight down on the floor next to me with a thud and little cloud of dust kicking in to the air.
Pointing my finger at it,I said,"Stay!" authoratatively as Mike placed the hatch door back and began to work his way down
"Will you go ahead and take it out to the car,please?,,I gotta grab a bandana real
I said,"Thanks,Mike." as he picked up the heavy
bag and I turned to the door to my room and began to fish my keys out of my pocket.
Getting into my room I had to think for a minute after looking in the dresser where I kept
most of my bandanas most of the time,and didn't find one.I then stepped to the closet,whipped open the door so fast the carpet
barely had time to make a sound and dropped to my knees to lean my head down and into the darkish,hazy mannish shaped form
above the bag of clothes contaminated with Reezes grave dirt in order to look on the lower shelf where I tended to keep the
overflow and not so good ones.
As the realization that my head was now inside the hat covered head shaped shadow blew into
my mind I came to know that Reez had dealt with the duppy I had encountered at the front door and that,,as long as whatever
had sicced them on me did not find Reez,,he would keep them off of me as best he could tonight.
Along with that came the knowledge that whatever had pulled him away before wasn't a big deal now and probally would not happen
again.He could assist me,,but not interact with me quite like before because they had found,,and began recovering his corpse
from the pepper tree woods I had met him in.Once it came to rest and they quit handling it,,he would most likely be able to
manifest as well as before with the knife connection,,followed quickly,,yet by an amused yet sheepish,surely sure recognition
that,,he was actually uncomfortable with the idea that my head was inside his and his was inside mine and would very much
like it if I would please back up allready.
Doing so hastily,,I could just barely make out a wide mung munching kind of smile on the
shadowy forms smokey dark face area along with two almost unseeable wide mirth filled eyes.
back at it,I said aloud,,"Well,if ya would warn a fella,,maybe they wouldn't get all up inside your business like that by
accident." and reached around it to grab a couple of bandanas off the shelf to it's right.
an amused reaction exude from the shadow man my nagger noted that,'well,at least he can take a jokin pokin.' and I said to
the friendly ghost as I stood back up,,"If I'll see ya later,,I suppose it will be at the beach,right?"
The atmosphere of the closet shifted and became darker while the idea of the smell of the board and planchette mated with
the ideal of a formerly sweet,not very innocent yet life filled young woman being sucked dry and cast away like a piece of
trash made it plain that I was right and that it was essential to deal with the matter.Even if not for Amandas but simply
for common decencies sake alone it had to squashed.
"Yeah,Reez,,that's true.Even if she was a
freak or whatever before,,no one deserves to be treated like a possession like that.That's crap."
A miasmic like bonechilling aura of something describable as utter evil crept through the
small place prompting my last words before shutting the door to be,,"Okay,,right,,it's evil.I gotta go,,did you see that cutie
that's waiting for me in my car?"
The feeling that splashed out from around the door frame as
I closed the door assured me he had indeed seen her.
Smiling at the idea that she could even get
the attention of a long dead guy,,but not dwelling on the creepier implications that brought to mind,,I left the room and
locked the door behind me.
Cutting through the living room I called out to John who I could hear in the kitchen singing
How Sweet it Is to Be Loved by You as a duet with Prissy,,"Hey,ya'll,,We're gone.See ya when ya get there!"
Popping out the front door I paused to lock the knob and close it before bouncing
past the steps to land on the sidewalk and quick step to the trunk of my car where Mike and Melissa were standing.
While fishing my keys out of my pocket I said to Melissa,,"Hey,,if ya dig into my pak you'll
find a cigarette pack with a bunch of hooters in it,,pull one out and fire it up,please,,if ya don't mind ma'am."
With a bright smile and a little curtsy she wordlessly turned to dive into the back seat and open my pak happily.
"How many of those have you burned up,Mike?" I asked as I opened my trunk and took out the trash can.
"None since I rode home with John." he replied as I began walking with the can to the back of the house.
Walking past the car window I looked in and seen Melissa pulling the doob pak out.She looked
up at me passing by on the drivers side and smiled as she pulled one out and stuck it between her lips.
Smiling big in return I continued to head off with the can and heard Mike say,,"Hey,Melissa,,need a light?" along with the
flicking of a lighters flint wheel which prompted me to say over my shoulder,"Don't ironlung that,Mike,,I want some of it."
"Ya better hurry then." came Melissas voice followed by a laugh.Turning around while continuing
to step backwards I looked through the windsheild at her smiley eyes above the joint she was lighting.Her eyes were crossed
to focus on the end of the spliff where the lighters flame was being sucked into the end of it.
Laughing I turned and stepped my pace alongside the house up a bit.
Quickly getting to the corner where I could hear John and Prissy still doing the James Taylor
tune through the closed kitchen windows I sort of slung the can so that it would slide into it's place on the other side of
the step and reversed direction to head back.
Passing back by the window I stuck my hand up and
waved it figuring John was sitting with Prissy on his lap on the long side of the table opposite the window.
The sound of their singing stopping and both voices said in almost perfect unison,"Be careful!Don't wreck!"
Turning my wave into a double looping motion ending with my hand pointing two fingers in the direction I was going I broke
into a trot.
Getting to the car I could see Mike,who was leaning in the passenger window,hand Melissa
the joint with his eyes closed,cheeks puffed,and lips pinched holding the obviously huge hit he had just stuffed into his
Looking at his contorted face as she took it from his fingers she said,,"Don't you dare
cough in my face,man!You better turn your head!"
Barely doing so before he exploded convulsively
into a grade A coughing fit that didn't finish until after Melissa took her a hit,handed it to me and I had handed it back
to her after filling my own lungs with a heaping dose of the fragrant bluegray smoke.
it,,a skeetching a bit doing so,,I watched Mike come out of his fit,,stand up straight then lean down into the window with
amazingly bloodshot eyes to noncholantly take the doober from Melissa as she finished with it.
Sniffing a bit first,he cleared his throat,spat then went for another ironlung hit.
Letting most of my hit out with a slight cough,,I said loudly,,"You're gonna blow a chunk out of your lungs if ya keep doing
that you bogart!"
Melissa looked out the car window at where he had just spat and mockingly said,,"It
looks like he just did.eeeww!!" then giggled a bit as I and Mike did also.
Having taken a rather
large,,yet not giant toke,,Mike finished and handed it back to Melissa while saying around the held hit,,"That's,,the,,second,,one,,today."
with a gesture to his sputum splatter.
"You're so gross,Mike" Melissa said while passing
the joint on to me.
"Yeah?" Mike asked indignantly,,then continued with,,"Well,,you're the
monkey in the middle.haha!" and flipped the end of Melissas hair before dodging back to evade a swat he figured would come
"Jerk!If I get outta this car,,I'm gonna hurt ya!" Melissa hurled at him through
the window as I seen through the haze that my keys were in the ignition,flipped the switch to accessory and twisted the radio
button to let the sound of "I Can Help" pour from the speakers.
'how appropriate.' my nagger
interjected while I chuckled to myself and took a big hit.
Mike had began bouncing back and forth while reaching out to put his fingertip close
to Melissa and say in a childlike voice,,"I'm not touching you,,I'm not touching you." then snatch it away in order to evade
her swatting hands only to swoop back in and repeat the irritating act.
Seeing as how she
was involved,,I let out my hit and took another one.
Mike kept at it untill Melissa roared like an angry rabbit or something else equally
cute and adorable and flung the car door open to chase Mike across the yard and actually kick him in his butt before he got
to the sidewalk.
Laughing,coughing and then choking from laughing at that sight while holding
another big hit I was barely able to see when Cindy pulled up in the drive at the rear of the house directly in front of me.
When I realized what the colored blob I seen through the tears in my eyes actually
was I got a grip on my self and managed to croak out,"Cindy's here." which Melissa then relayed to Mike,who was still flopping
around in the grass holding onto the quivering butt muscle that Melissas well delivered kick had charlie horsed.
"Okay,,hey,ugh,dang Melissa,what are you wearing?pointy toe boots?Oww." he said as he crawled a few feet our way before getting
up and heading toward the back in a hobbling way still rubbing where her sneakers rounded rubber tip had connected.
Stepping one foot in the car Melissa said to his contorted up like Stan Laurel face,"I
TOUCHED you!" before dropping onto the leather seat and swinging the door shut while laughing.
"You dented my ass is what ya did!" he exclaimed as he got past the front of my car.
I laughed and handed the now roach short joint to Melissa and picked up my pack of
cigarettes that Melissa had evidently took out with the joint pak and laid on the seat.
She took it,drew a big hit and tried to hand it back to me which I waved away and said,,"Go ahead,,I smoked the rest of it."
then fished out a cigarette,tucked the pack in my shirt pouch and decided I wanted a soda.
Sticking the cigarette in my lips I began twisting a bit untill I was able to lean up and over the seat.I then worked a bottle
of Pepsi out of the ice while asking Melissa from around the Winston,,"You want one?"
She coughed out along with a big puff of smoke.
I reached the first one out back and around to her with my left hand and bumped her
slightly on the head which startled her a tad and set her to giggling.
I stuck it in my right and closed the cooler,worked my way back down in front of the steering wheel and twisted the cap off
before letting the cigarette fall from my lips and swallowing down a few big gulps.
Melissa finish with the roach and toss what was now essentially only paper out the window I belched a little then picked my
cigarette up from my lap and began looking around for my lighter.
After she twisted off
her bottle cap and began taking a big swig she stuck out her hand so I could see the lighter in it.
"Thanks."I reached out to take it then asked,"Are you ready?" before lighting my cigarette and tucking the lighter in my shirt
Belching out the word,,"Yeaahhp!" she giggling before saying,"You betcha,,come on,,let's
Smiling,,I cranked the car,popped it into reverse and began backing out the drive while
singing,,"East Bound and around!,roll it up and smoke it,,we're gonna do what we said's gonna get done!"